Last updated on June 26th, 2020 at 02:57 am
Last Updated on June 26, 2020 Posted by Colonial Acres Coins
Canada is a melting pot of cultures and is a multilingual country with French and English as the official languages. People embrace their spoken language as a symbol of their identity and the Royal Canadian Mint has honoured these languages through a new coin that celebrates the history of the Official Languages Act that came into effect in 1969. This coin stands out among Canadian coins for sale because of what it represents and here’s why.
Canada’s Linguistic Situation and the Official Languages Act
When the Official Languages Act was passed in 1969 it represented a tremendous move in the right direction for a country that struggled with its linguistic duality up to that point. French speakers, in particular, felt that their language, and by extension, their identity was at risk of being erased as English seemed on a trajectory towards dominance. But they knew that the loss of their language would ultimately also mean the loss of a core part of who they were. The act brought legitimacy to the two major languages, French and English allowing speakers of each to feel valued and accepted in their country. It also reflected the inclusivity and accepting nature of the Canadian spirit.
What the Act Meant for the Country
The passing of the act meant that official businesses such as the production of legal documents could be done in both languages and citizens could expect to hear and see their language in various media being used in formal functions. It also means that the education system had to cater to the speakers of both languages. This move brought pride and a sense of self-worth to speakers of the two languages but more specifically to speakers of French since that language was on a decline and speakers were passionate about its retention. Essentially it showed that Canada was dedicated to the acceptance and embracing of everything that made the country what it was, especially the diversity in its population.
The 2019 Canada $10 50th Anniversary of the Official Languages Act Fine Silver Coin
The commemorative coin celebrates the 50th anniversary of the act is, therefore, a special one. It encapsulates in its small circular frame, the unifying force that came with the legislative move. The coin’s designers have successfully transferred the core elements of a critical event in Canada’s linguistic growth to this 99.99% silver coin.
The Maple leaf, a powerful unifying symbol, representing Canadian culture, is present on the coin in a dominant way. Two large bold red Maple leaves each representing one of the two languages, occupy a central position on the coin and closer inspection will reveal many others dotting the background, their lack of colour causing them to almost blend in. The two leaves have the same size and this is a nod to Canada’s diversity as it indicates the equality between the two languages. The coin’s inscriptions are seen in both French and English with some statements remaining untranslated. Importantly, the inscription ‘Official Languages Act’ is transcribed in both French and English. Speakers of both French and English will find this coin very valuable as they observe its features and reflect on what it represents. This is one of those Canadian coins for sale that will attract buyers from around the nation. Undoubtedly, the Royal Canadian Mint has hit the mark with the production of this collectible piece.